COMMUNICATION IN LABOUR RELATIONS AND ATTAINMENT OF INDUSTRIAL PEACE IN THE NIGERIAN UNION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

COMMUNICATION IN LABOUR RELATIONS AND ATTAINMENT OF INDUSTRIAL PEACE IN THE NIGERIAN UNION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES
COMMUNICATION IN LABOUR RELATIONS AND ATTAINMENT OF INDUSTRIAL PEACE IN THE NIGERIAN UNION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

COMMUNICATION IN LABOUR RELATIONS AND ATTAINMENT OF INDUSTRIAL PEACE IN THE NIGERIAN UNION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1     Background to the Study

Adaption is a requirement for organic survival, but adaption itself requires effective communication. The simple fact is that organizations cannot function and individual cannot achieve their objectives without effective communication.

Communication is necessary in all aspects of organizational activities including: planning, organizing, motivating and controlling. Communication is also important in specialized organizational activities such as manpower, planning, recruitment and selection, performance appraisal, training, compensation and benefit, industrial and labour relations, staff movement and audit.

 

Research findings documenting the value of organizational communication shows the correlation between an effective communication system and over all organizational performance. Currently some business leaders’ are speaking up about the importance of effective communication in their organization. Goldhaber (2013).

Information is vital to effective communication as well as to the success of an organization. Hence, communication has remained “the most important human survival skills”, Akpan (2017). Unfortunately, communication has also remained the most important human destructive skill.

In an attempt to survive, human beings must interact with their fellows and with the environment or the system. The same interaction behavior is exhibited in our organization among the employers.

 

The interact may react positively with the interactive on an organizational issue. This is a situation as compromise / co-operation. In a situation of compromise/co-operation, there is a mutual interdependent relationship propelling individuals or groups to work towards shared goals. Several factors influence the perceptions and reactions of individual or group leading to co-operation. Among the most important factors are the principles of reciprocity and personal orientation towards working with others. Baron and Greenberg, (2011). The communication in labour relations and attainment of industrial peace in the nigerian union of local government employees.

The preceding factors are highly dependent on human communication. In the absence of effective communication, they cannot be expressed. Hence, compromise/co-operation is a function of communication or communication interaction. On the other hand, the interactant may react negatively with the interactic on certain issues. This is a situation of disagreement or conflict. In the organizational setting, the disagreement may result from organizational task procedure or the management approach to human relations, management approach to industrial and labour relations, etc.

In Nigeria, the history of labour is riddled with industrial unrest. This condition prevails in establishments run by the three tiers of administration in Nigeria, namely: federal, state and local government, the same situation is also prevalent in private and public companies, educational institutions, health institutions, agricultural establishments, financial institutions and others. Conflicts, trade disputes, protests and demonstrations and strike actions have become regular features in these institutions and in the civil service as well as the local government service.

 

COMMUNICATION IN LABOUR RELATIONS AND ATTAINMENT OF INDUSTRIAL PEACE IN THE NIGERIAN UNION OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

In the local government councils, workers’ salaries and other entitlement are paid irregularly. There are constant struggles between local government councils and the Nigeria union of local government employees (NULGE) for the provision of the workers entitlement sent to the councils through the Federal Government Statutory Fund Allocation. It may not be an exaggeration to state that the most important ingredient in successful labour relations is effective communication. Communication is essential in all aspects of human and material resource management.

It is crucial in the managerial process of planning, organizing, motivating and control. Both the employers of labour and employees need constant interaction in order to maintain cordial organizational climate and industrial peace.

 

Communication as a process of managing messages for the purpose of creating meaning is important in all processes of labour relations (Frey, Botan and Kreps, 2020). Some of the processes that are heavily dependent on communication for success are collective bargaining, grievance, procedures, government relations, industrial arbitrations unionization and labour management agreement.

 

Regulation of relations between workers and employees and between worker and workmen. Encouragement of participation of members in decision making processes at Local, State and National Levels. Advancement of education and training of members and employees of the union. Negotiation and maintenance of just and proper hours of work, roles of payment and other conditions and service.

 

1.2   Statement of the Problem

The process of understanding messages and managing, messages for the purpose of creating meaning are relevant to effective labour relations since the concern of labour relations can be seen as communicating for mutual co-existence. Labour relations according to Aina (2019) is concerned with, the fact that the worker is adequately paid for his labour that his family has decent food and housing, that his lifetime of toil yields dignity for himself and a happier prospect for his children. The communication in labour relations and attainment of industrial peace in the nigerian union of local government employees.

However, in the local government councils, these rewards do not appear to be forthcoming bringing. Workers’ Salaries and other entitlements in the last five years have not been paid regularly. The relationship between the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) and the Local Government Councils seems not cordial. These are constant struggle between the local government council, and NULGE officials for the provision of the workers’ entitlements sent to the councils via the Federal Government Statutory Fund Allocation. Regrettably protest, demonstration and complaints have fallen on deaf ears and the conditions has witnessed very little improvement.

Therefore, wonders the extent of communication utilized in labour relations practice in the local government administration. / communication between the union and local government council effective?

 

1.3  Objectives of the study

The study set out to:

  1. Find out if effective communication is an integral goal of labour relations practice in the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), Akwa Ibom State.
  2. Find out if the Union officials and the local government administrators have undergone some training in communication in industrial and labour relations.
  3. Ascertain the frequency of communication in peacetime management and in conflict and trade dispute management in (NULGE), Akwa Ibom State.
  4. To find out the method, modes and processes of communication in conflict and trade disputes in NULGE, Akwa Ibom State.

 

1.4     Research Questions

In order to solve the main problem, the following will be investigated

  1. Is effective communication an integral goal to labour relation practice in the Nigerian Union of Local Government employees (NULGE, Akwa Ibom State?
  2. Have the union officials and the local government administrators undergone some training in industrial and labour relations?
  3. What is the frequency of communication in peacetime management and in conflict and trade dispute management in NULGE, Akwa Ibom State?
  4. What are the methods, modes and processes of communication in conflict and trade disputes in NULGE, Akwa Ibom State?

 

1.5     Justification of the Study

Labour relations are one of the most challenging areas of organizational management. Its approaches influence the type of organizational and communication climate existing in an organization. It is the belief of the researcher that the study has helped to point out some of the flaws in communication in a sensitive area of management such as labour relations, these flaws could be remedied to improve on organizational performance in local government administration. The communication in labour relations and attainment of industrial peace in the nigerian union of local government employees.

Furthermore, the results obtained from this may be of importance to communicologists, industrial (psychologists, federal, state and local government, managers of organizations and students).

 

1.6     Delimitation of the Study

This study concentrated on the Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees, Akwa Ibom State. It areas of emphasis were communication in labour relations practice and attainment of industrial peace in Local Government administration in Akwa Ibom State. This study assessed the effectiveness of communication in labour relations, communication in conflict and trade disputes, frequency of communication and attainment of industrial peace in local government administration in Akwa Ibom state.

 

1.7     Limitations of the Study

The major limitations of the study were that subjects for the survey, using questionnaire were also not easily accessible. Also both the staff and NULGE members did not seem to take the survey serious. It is therefore possible that their real opinions were not clearly stated. In spite of this, the rigorous process of administration bestows sufficient credit on the result obtained.

 

1.8     Definition of Terms

Communication: communication is a process through which needs, emotions, desires, goals and sentiments are expressed among human being using codes , symbols and languages understood by the parties in which human survival relationship and development are routed.

Labour Relations: this is the study of the relations between workers and employees of labour or a process of interest accommodation, that is, employers and workers endeavoring to co-exist.

 

Industrial Relations: this is the process of negotiation between union and employed strike and government invention in strike and negotiation in industries.

Industrial Peace: it is a prevailing atmosphere devoid of unresolved conflict, trade disputes and strike actions.

Collective Bargaining: this involves the various methods used in bargaining between the employer and the union.

Labour Climate: this refers to the atmosphere attitude or tone which members of labour union experience as they go about their daily routines.

NULGE: Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees; A trade union for local government employers in Nigeria.

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